After a long wait and some broken promises, the release date for Prince’s Purple Rain Deluxe Edition has finally been set for June 9th of this year. While it was originally intended to be a 30th anniversary release in 2014, the album was continuously pushed back, due to a myriad of circumstances including Prince’s untimely passing in 2016.
This will be the first posthumous release since Prince 4ever was released in November last year. The album will supposedly feature the remastered Purple Rain album, as well as introduce two albums of previously unreleased music. There will also be two full concert films and other miscellaneous bonus material, the full extent of which are yet to be announced.
Prince, who passed away in late April last year, is renowned for his indefatigable work ethic, while his alleged bank vault of unreleased music is legendary within the music industry. According to filmmaker Mobeen Azahar, the man behind the documentary Hunting For Prince’s Vault,
The album announcement comes alongside the welcome news that Prince’s contractual obligation to Tidal’s subscription service is now up. After 18 months being exclusive to Tidal, 19 Prince albums will be made available to all digital streaming services today, just in time for the 59th annual Grammy Awards in Los Angeles.
Because Prince did not leave a will, his estate has long been in turmoil over what to do with his work and who owns it. But despite the legal battles, Prince’s work between 1978 and 1996 is now accessible to services such as Napster, Spotify, Apple, Pandora and Amazon Prime and others.
Warner Bros. CEO Cameron Strang stated that he was excited to uphold Prince’s legacy and give his fans more of what they want:
“Warner Bros. is thrilled to be able to bring Prince’s music to his millions of fans around the world via streaming services, fittingly on music’s biggest night.”
The timing could not be more perfect as Bruno Mars and The Time are scheduled to give a Prince tribute performance at the Grammy’s tonight. And it is not coincidental. The intent was that Prince’s music would be available by the time the tribute starts. The contractual agreement only includes the music made between 1978 and 1996, with any later music after that still remain under different contractual agreements.